I don't even know how to speak on this book. Once I would have had a literary approach, but this is a casual blog, not a research paper, and I really haven't been emphasizing the literary approach much. I could take a personal approach, but I don't talk much personal on here.
I keep collecting Willa Cather books without reading any. I feel like I should like her, which is why I keep buying her books. A Lost Lady might have been a strange starting place since I get the sense that it's a little different from her other works. However, the title called to me when I looked to my shelves for my next read.
I also get the sense that I would not have cared for this book if I had read it a few years ago, or maybe even a few months ago. But a few months can make a great difference, eh? The title refers to Mrs. Forrester and so we suppose that the book is all about her, but it is just as much about Neil, whose perspective we are reading, and Captain Forrester. For Neil, it is all about what he saw (and didn't see) in the Forresters--and for the Captain, it is about what his wife was to him and what he was to her.
(This is all nonsense, trying to do a brief and casual blog post on this book. I'm not going to have the chance to actually talk about anything.)
There is something so bittersweet in these pages. Cather's simple writing style is characteristic of that early twentieth century time, yet I feel more drawn to it than I normally do to writing of that era. There is something almost like The Great Gatsby in here, something of that longing to see a particular concept within a person, something about the creation of concepts and dreams within a person's face. Something about changing times--and people that will always remain people even when everything about people changes.
This book is like a poem, a piece of an image that speaks volumes of thought. I am quite glad I didn't read it before because I think that I would have just dismissed it with a lack of interest before. Now I find it stirring as it brings up thought after thought.